Brainwaves are the language of the brain. The electrical activity emanating from the brain generates frequencies in waves which can be measured with Electroencephalography (EEG) and are calculated in two ways. The first is in frequency, which represents the number of times a wave repeats, or cycles, per second, called Hertz (Hz). The second is amplitude, which measures the power of the electrical impulse in the distance between the peaks and valleys that form the wave.
There are five main brainwave categories, each of which defines a specific range of electrical activity in Hz. They are: GAMMA, BETA, ALPHA, THETA and DELTA. The chart below depicts a sample of EEG brainwave activity in each category.
As you can see, the wave patterns vary markedly as the cycles per second change. The higher number of cycles per second creates a greater Hz value and the greater the Hz value the more activity occurs in the brain. Each category of brainwave activity is associated with its own specific characteristics which correspond to unique states of mind and the resultant mental and physical influences.
GAMMA BRAINWAVES (+40 Hz) are the waves highest in frequency at above 40Hz. They also tend to be the lowest in amplitude. Gamma waves are present in whole brain functioning and are associated with bursts of insight and information processing related to “super-learning” and peak performance.
BETA BRAINWAVES (13-40 Hz) are lower in frequency than Gamma waves with slightly higher amplitude. They usually dominate in normal, waking consciousness, when you are processing information or engaged in activity or conversation. They are associated with analytical thinking, a state of alertness, and, at higher levels, anxiety and stress.
ALPHA BRAINWAVES (8-12.9 Hz) are lower still than Beta waves, with even higher amplitude. They are active when the eyes are closed, or when the brain is not actively processing information. They are indicative of a relaxed, calm state of mind.
THETA BRAINWAVES (4-7.9 Hz) are slower than Gamma, Beta or Alpha waves and are typically of even greater amplitude. They are active during light sleep, including the REM dream state, and deep meditation. Theta state is also known as the “twilight” state as it is normally only momentarily experienced as you drift off to sleep (from Alpha) and arise from deep sleep (from Delta).
DELTA BRAINWAVES (0.2-3.9 Hz) are the slowest in frequency and the highest in amplitude. They are active in deep, dreamless sleep and in very deep, transcendental meditation where awareness is completely detached.
The brain does not operate on only one frequency range at a time, all waves are constantly active at varying amplitudes, and typically one will dominate over the others. Over time, the prevalence of certain brainwave patterns over others will heavily influence – either positively or negatively – one’s frame of mind or even physical manifestations of health.
Wishing you Happiness,